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Vietnam Cultural Exploration

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1,807

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  • 1
  • 12 Days
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Phill Skyba

Trails of Indochina

Trails of Indochina is a luxury DMC focusing on highly personalised, innovative and unique tailormade itineraries specialising in themes such as active, romance and culture across a range of destinations in Asia.

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Vietnam Cultural Exploration

from

USD

1,807

/ person
  • 12 Days

Vietnam Cultural Exploration

Discover Vietnam’s fascinating culture and history visiting key cities from north to south. Explore heritage sites and learn about their cultural significance with opportunities to interact with local experts for a unique perspective of the country’s recent history.

Hanoi arrival

Upon arrival at Noi Bai Airport, either Domestic or International arrival, after clearing all customs procedures, please proceed to exit gate and look for your guide who will be waiting at the lobby, holding the Trails of Indochina signboard with your name on it. Your guide will come to meet you up and transfer you to hotel. The regular check-in time is at 14:00; early check-in is NOT included and subject to availability. Meals: None Read more

1 night stay in Hanoi

A Day In The Life Of A Hanoian

Today’s tour guide will take you to the “standing newspaper” where your guide will tell a fascinating story of a time when newspapers were considered a luxury in Hanoi. Next, stop at a local coffee shop to observe the rush of daily life in the Old Quarter, before transferring to Gioi Market – the corner where thousands of trade goods are sold. From kitchenware to motorcycle parts, this market has everything! Continue your exploration by driving to the rail station in a Hanoi suburb and catch a local train back to the city center. After a 10-minute train ride that passes over the first French bridge built on the Red River, follow your guide and walk through "cuisine street" where you can find many tasty dishes and discover a life beat of the Old Town in these modern days. NOTES: • Available time: Morning only • Duration: 5 hours • Starting time: 08:30 • Special note: Not available during Tet holidays Meals: Breakfast, Lunch Read more

1 night stay in Hanoi

Hosted Lunch in Bat Trang Village

Bat Trang Pottery Village, a half-millenary old traditional Vietnamese town, is located southeast of Hanoi in the Bat Trang Commune of Gia Lam District. The journey their ventures over Chuong Duong Bridge and past the dike on the Red River. This village has a deep artisanal history for visitors to uncover as they stroll through gaining valuable insight into the art of making Vietnamese ceramics. After learning the process of molding and carving clay pots, dishes and vases, try to test your skills and creativeness by making your own pottery with help from the Bat Trang craftsmen. Before leaving the village, enjoy a hosted lunch in an ancient Bat Trang house. NOTES: • Available time: Morning only • Duration: 4.5 hours • Starting time: 09:00 • Not available during Tet holidays Meals: Breakfast, Lunch Read more

1 night stay in Hanoi

Hanoi – Hoa Lu – Tam Coc

Depart Hanoi for a 2hr drive to the Trang An Landscape Complex in Ninh Binh Province. Inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2014, Trang An is famed for its spectacular landscape of limestone karst peaks soaring from valleys, some of which are submerged, and surrounded by vertical cliffs. Within the complex, visit Vietnam’s ancient capital of Hoa Lu, the country’s first centralized feudal state from the end of the 10th century. While the ancient citadel has largely disappeared, the temples of the Dinh and Le dynasties still stand surrounded by rice paddies. After lunch at a local restaurant in Ninh Binh, continue to Tam Coc, known as “Halong Bay on Land”, where a skilled rower will take you on a 2hr slow journey on the winding rivers/canals. Enjoy the views of the beautiful karst formations as you enter three of the many natural caves formed under the hills. NOTES: • Suggested departure time: 08:30. • Tour duration: 06 hours. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch Read more

1 night stay in Ninh Binh

Tam Coc – Nho Quan – Hanoi/ Evening Flig

Take a short drive to the Tho Ha Village in Nho Quan to begin a leisurely 5-15km (3-10mi) biking trip passing by sleepy villages and picturesque countryside landscapes. Continue to Dong Tam Hamlet to participate in some engaging agricultural activities such as catching crabs, fishing and transplanting and watering vegetables. After an hour or so, return to the hamlet in time for a cooking class and lunch with a local family where sweet potato cakes and grilled fish are on the menu. After lunch, board a rowboat at the Nha Le Pier and enjoy a trip to the 900m (2,953ft)-deep Galaxy Grotto, so named for the sea of stalactites growing from the ceiling above, like so many stars. The grotto is also home to a large bat colony which nests near the end of the grotto. Return to Hanoi in the late afternoon. NOTES: • Suggested departure time: 07:30. • Tour duration: 09 hours. • Estimated arrival time at Hanoi: 16:30. Straight to Noi Bai Airport for your flight to Danang. Upon arrival at Danang Airport, after clearing all customs procedures, please proceed to exit gate and look for your guide who will be waiting at the lobby, holding the Trails of Indochina signboard with your name on it, if you cannot locate your guide, please go to the nearest Information counter and have them call the emergency number (+84) 9 1349 3398 for assistance. Your guide will come to meet you up and transfer you to hotel in Hoi An. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch Read more

1 night stay in Hoi An

Buffalo Cart & Farming Life On Rice Fiel

Morning start at 08:00, discover Hoi An’s countryside with a leisurely buffalo cart ride passing by rice paddies and vegetable farms to the village of Cam Thanh where the Thu Bon River meets the sea with its scenic ocean views. Your guide will explain the methods of farming in the area and the produce grown before getting your hands dirty and venturing into the rice fields. Change into work clothes provided by the villagers and join the friendly farmers in some of their agricultural work including ploughing, raking and watering the soil and transplanting rice. Enjoy a cup of tea with the farmers before returning to the town. Between the 15th and 19th centuries, Hoi An known then as ‘Faifo’, was a prosperous trading port, attracting Chinese, Japanese, Dutch, Portuguese and Spanish ships amongst others. Today, this World Heritage ancient town is recognized for its well-preserved architecture, pedestrian-only streets and distinctive local cuisine, allowing visitors a glimpse of its illustrious past. Hoi An’s narrow lanes are ideal for a guided walking tour of its many atmospheric sights including: the old merchant houses with influences from Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese architecture; the 400-year-old Japanese Covered Bridge, first built in the 1590s by the Japanese community to link them with the Chinese quarters across the stream; the Assembly Hallof the Chaozhou Chinese Congregation with its intricate woodcarvings; and the colorful market with stalls brimming with local specialties including silk, which can be turned into fashionable garments within a day or two NOTES: • Suggested departure time: 08:00 • Lunch included • This activity is not recommended from October - January due to weather conditions. • Tour duration: 6.5 hours. • The Hoi An entrance ticket is valid for entry to 5 sightseeing spots in Hoi An including merchant houses, the Japanese Covered Bridge, museums, pagodas and assembly halls for 24 hours. It also provides entry into Hoi An Ancient Town for as long as you are in Hoi An. Please keep the entrance ticket with you at all times should you independently visit Hoi An later in the evening or on another day. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch Read more

1 night stay in Hoi An

Hoi An Culinary Experience At Market Res

Learn the secrets of preparing traditional Vietnamese cuisine with a market tour and cooking class. Set off to a local market with a chef from the Market Restaurant and Cooking School. Your chef will share shopping tips including how to select fresh eggs and ripe fruit and which herbs are used in Vietnamese cuisine. Continue to the school, an elegant old building with a French colonial-style exterior and traditional Hoi An interior. Then participate in an entertaining, hands-on cookery course held in one of three teaching areas with modern equipment for a truly immersive cooking experience. Chat with your chef to learn more about typical ingredients of Central Vietnamese cuisine then enjoy tasting what you have prepared. NOTES: • Availability: Morning only. • Suggested departure time: 09:00. • Tour duration: 04 hours. Enjoy your afternoon at leisure (No car and no guide at disposal). Meals: Breakfast, Lunch Read more

1 night stay in Hoi An

Train Danang – Hue #SE6 @10:08-13:36 (So

Morning your guide will meet you at the hotel lobby and transfer to Danang Train Station for your train to Hue. After arrive at Hue Train Station, after collecting the luggage please proceed to exit gate, with your guide transfer to Hue center. Once the imperial capital of the Nguyen Lords from the 17th to the 19th centuries, Hue’s splendid emperors’ tombs, ancient pagodas and the remains of the Citadel contribute to its undeniable royal charm. Explore the Imperial Citadel at the center of the Complex of Hue Monuments inscribed by UNESCO as a World Heritage site. Enter through the towering main gate and appreciate the magnificent architecture and gardens while your guide explains the events and the intrigue surrounding the former royal court. Despite being heavily bombed during the Vietnam War, there are some incredibly well-preserved sections intact and others which are being carefully restored. After leaving the citadel, there’s time for a short visit to the Royal Antique Museum. Select one of two royal tombs to visit: (1) The Tu Duc Royal Tomb, the most impressive of all the royal mausoleums, built by Emperor Tu Duc between 1864 and 1867. Interestingly, Tu Duc had 104 wives and countless concubines but left no heirs to the throne. While the complex does include a tomb, together with pavilions and temples, no one knows exactly where Tu Duc was buried as all 200 servants who buried the king were beheaded to keep his final resting place a secret from grave robbers, or (2) the elaborate Khai Dinh Royal Tomb whose architecture showcases elements of Eastern art and Western design. While smaller than many of the other tombs, the Khai Dinh Royal Tomb is more flamboyant, with the largest dragons in the country forming the side walls leading up to the tomb. Notice the tomb’s blackened concrete exterior and colorful mosaic interior in the spacious main building decorated with murals of the Four Seasons, Eight Precious Objects and Eight Fairies. After exploring the tomb, return to your hotel. NOTES: • Suggested departure time: 14:00 • Tour duration: 3.5 hours Meals: Breakfast Read more

1 night stay in Hue

Cruising & Biking To Rural Village (20km

Depart on a 1hr dragon boat ride to Sinh Village which is not only renowned for its annual wrestling festival on January 10 (lunar calendar), but also for its folk paintings featuring religious characters. Take a short walk to the house of Mr. Huu Phuoc, the oldest artisan in the village, to hear about the 400-year-old craft of using “dzo” paper made from tree bark and dyed with natural materials like red earth, sea shells and the ashes of bamboo leaves. The paintings are then protected with a layer of sticky rice paste, resulting in an amazingly long-lasting finish. Cycle 40mins past rice paddy fields to Thanh Tien Village and learn about the 300-year-old craft of paper flower making. The flowers, including chrysanthemums, roses, orchids and sunflowers, are mainly used to decorate altars for ancestor worship and as offerings in religious rituals. Try creating your own paper lotus flower under the guidance of one of the artisans. Continue cycling to Tien Non Village, a scenic flower and vegetable growing area which takes advantage of rich alluvial deposits from the river. Explore the scenic village before cycling back to your hotel. NOTES: • Availability: Morning, Afternoon. • Suggested departure time: 08:00, 13:00. • Tour duration: 04 hours. Meals: Breakfast Read more

1 night stay in Hue

Morning Flight Hue to Saigon / Hidden Se

Morning your guide will meet you at the hotel lobby and transfer to the airport for your flight to Saigon. Upon arrival Tan Son Nhat airport, after clearing all customs procedures, please proceed to exit gate and look for your guide who will be waiting at the lobby, holding the Trails of Indochina signboard with your name on it. If you cannot locate your guide, please come to the closest Information booth and have them call the emergency number (+84) 9 1871 3456. Your guide will come to meet you and transfer you to hotel. The regular check-in time is at 14:00; early check-in is NOT included and subject to availability Behind its glitzy, newly-built skyscrapers and modern pace of life, Saigon shelters a plethora of little-known stories about its fascinating history and culture hidden away from the main districts of the city. Visit a secret weapons chamber which the Viet Cong used as a place to hide and store weapons during the Vietnam War. Weave through back alleys and meet some of the locals who live in narrow small houses in space-starved Saigon. Then chill out at a coffee shop tucked away in an old French colonial-era apartment block. Meander across a local market to meet a street artist who has spent half of his life making souvenir carvings. Finally, visit a hidden restaurant accessed through an antique elevator before returning to your hotel. NOTES: • Suggested departure time: 14:00. • Tour duration: 04 hours. Meals: Breakfast Read more

1 night stay in Ho Chi Minh

Inside The Heart Of Mekong Delta River L

Early morning departures leave from Saigon for a 1.5hr drive to Ben Tre, the gateway to the Mekong Delta. Escape the high-energy city for a day of exploring sprawling rice paddies and colorful fruit farms. Arrive at the quaint An Khanh hamlet, where travelers will visit a small home factory that makes the traditional dish of sticky rice covered by coconut leaves. Meet with the owner and her hard-working team who will teach you about how they use century-old traditional methods to make this special and tasty cake. Continue this rural journey of discovery with a short drive to meet a local family in Quoi Son village. After wandering though the lush gardens of this village, a motorboat awaits your arrival to begin a thirty-minute excursion passing peaceful scenes of countryside living. Trade boat for bicycle and enjoy a relaxing ride over easy, level terrain as you travel through narrow village lanes lined with fruit orchards and customary cottages. When you arrive at your destination, sample exotic fresh fruits on the orchard of a local fruit farmer. Here you can also choose to ride on either a horse-drawn cart or tri-motorcycle through the lush surroundings of the fruit farms before boarding a sampan for a ride along the narrow canals of the Mekong. End your excursion at a local farmer's house where a lunch of Mekong Delta specialties will be served before driving back to Saigon. NOTES: • Suggested starting time: 08:00 • Duration: 7-8 hours Maximum: 8-10 pax per group per boat • The cycling distance can be 3, 5, or 7 km, depending on your physical ability and length you desire • The exploration can be done on foot, horse cart or tri-motorcycle instead of the cycling • The sticky rice factory is available for groups of 1-6pax only due to the small lane Meals: Breakfast, Lunch Read more

1 night stay in Ho Chi Minh

Ho Chi Minh city departure

Enjoy your time at leisure until your guide pick you up at the hotel lobby and transfer to the airport for your departure flight. The regular check-out time is at 12:00; late check out is NOT included and subject to availability. Meals: Breakfast

1 night stay in Ho Chi Minh city

ACCOMMODATIONS

Day in trip
Location
Hotel
Day 4
Location Ninh Binh
Day 5
Location Hoi An
Day 8
Location Hue
Day 10
Location Ho Chi Minh city
Day in trip
Location
Hotel
Day 1
Location Hanoi
Day 4
Location Ninh Binh
Day 5
Location Hoi An
Day 8
Location Hue
Day 10
Location Ho Chi Minh city

TRIP PACKAGE

Package includes

  • • Overnight accommodation including daily breakfast, hotels tax and service charges
  • • Private transfers and transportation on tour
  • • Sightseeing with local English speaking guides (one guide in each city)
  • • Entrance fees and boat rides
  • • Meals as specified (meals only, no drinks/ water)
  • • Airfares: HAN-DAD/ HUI-SGN (Economy class with airport tax)
  • • Local Train Danang – Hue (soft seats)
  • • Cold towels and water on sightseeing days

Package excludes

  • • Airport Assistance Service
  • • Separate luggage truck
  • • Visa
  • • Other meals where not mentioned in the program
  • • Drinks/water at included lunches and dinners
  • • Other flights & airport taxes
  • • Hotel early check in/ Late check-out
  • • Overweight luggage
  • • Personal expenses
  • • Travel insurance
  • • Tips & gratuities
  • • Other services not listed in inclusive column

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